19 Bruce to Curtin

Cablegram 130[A] LONDON, 8 August 1942, 3.10 p.m.

MOST SECRET AND PERSONAL

Your telegram 7268 [1], paragraph 1, subsection 2. I regret that I did not make this point quite as clear as I should. When the Agreement between the Chiefs of Staff and Marshall and King came before War Cabinet, which I attended, the matter had really reached the point where only formal assent was required and the possibility of effecting any alteration, or having any views considered, was really past. In other words, we had had no opportunity of expressing any views 'in formulation of policy by War Cabinet'. (Paragraph 2(a) of your 7268.) In this instance the decision arrived at was one with which I was fully in accord and was not of a character that I felt it was necessary that I should have referred to you to obtain your views. If, however, the contrary had been the case and it had been a matter where Australia held strong views contrary to the decision that was taken, the fact that we did not hear of the decision until it was too late to alter it and had had no opportunity to express our views in decisions of policy would have created a very difficult position. This was the reason why I used the words 'although the immediate problem created by the visit of the American representatives was past, the major question of implementation of the arrangement with regard to our representation in War Cabinet remains unsettled'. [2]

With regard to paragraph 3 of your telegram-my telegrams 121[A], 122[A] and 123[A] [3] were sent purely for the purpose of keeping you personally informed and with no idea that there should be any intervention by the Government.

I am hopeful that the position will be put upon a satisfactory basis down the lines of my letter to Attlee of 1st August. [4] You can rest assured that I have your views fully in mind and will do everything in my power to give effect to them.

BRUCE

1 Document 17.

2 See Document 15.

3 Documents 14-16.

4 See Document 14.

[FA:A3195, 1942, 1.31383]